SHAABAN MAKES GERMAN DETOUR IN PURSUIT OF F3 BREAKTHROUGH Arab driver hopes two-day test can boost Euro Series bid at Brand's Hatch Dubai, UAE, 26th August, 2008: Basil Shaaban is hoping a detour into Germany this week can put him...
SHAABAN MAKES GERMAN DETOUR IN PURSUIT OF F3 BREAKTHROUGH
Arab driver hopes two-day test can boost Euro Series bid at Brand's Hatch
Dubai, UAE, 26th August, 2008: Basil Shaaban is hoping a detour into Germany this week can put him back on track for a breakthrough in the F3 Euro Series.
Shaaban, the only Arab driver contesting the world's toughest Formula 3 championship, is undergoing two days of testing at Lausitzring (Monday and Tuesday) to boost his hopes of a first top-ten finish to propel him towards a place in the Euro Series elite.
After a series of frustrations at the wheel of his Shell Dallara Mercedes this season, he is determined to give a good account of himself when the F3 Series roars back to life at England's famous Brand's Hatch circuit at the weekend following a one-month break.
"I just can't wait to get in the car again in the racing environment and try to build on the lessons learnt in the recent weeks," said Shaaban. "I've been looking forward to our two-day test at Lausitzring before Brands because there are several major developments we are going to be testing on my car,
"These include a finalised version of a trick front suspension component which we've been developing, while I'll also be trying the dampers (shock-absorbers) that my teammate has been using during the season to see if they can improve my car's cornering behaviour.'
Shaaban's outright objective is to be ready to test and help develop a Formula One car by the time Abu Dhabi -- where he was raised and first developed a passion for motor racing - makes its debut in the F1 World Championship towards the end of next year,
The Lebanese driver made a disappointing exit from the recent RTL GP Masters of Formula 3 at Zolder in Belgium, when the rear wheels of his Shell Dallara Mercedes locked on the first lap, sending the car into a 360-degree spin, into the gravel bed and out of the race.
But his chances of making the step up to F1 have certainly not been hindered by the results of a fitness and health assessment he underwent in Austria recently.
"This was the same assessment that the Red Bull drivers have, and the results underlined that I have an excellent level of fitness which would suffice in F1," said Shaaban.
"But at the same time I've realised that there are areas where I can still improve, and I'm determined to excel in overall fitness. While I am mostly below my physical limits while driving the car, there have been times when I felt near the limit of endurance, especially when I was ill at Nurburgring."
"So I'm going to be working even harder on my fitness, and particularly on raising my Lactate threshold, which is the power output above which you begin to produce lactic acid faster than the body can eliminate it, and cannot be sustained for extended periods of time."